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Oscar Hammerstein Museum receives $500,000 state grant


The nonprofit Oscar Hammerstein Museum and Theatre Education Center (OHMTEC) has been awarded $500,000 in Pennsylvania state funding through the Redevelopment Assistance Capitol Program (RACP).

RACP is a commonwealth grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects.

The museum will use the funding to purchase, restore, and preserve Oscar Hammerstein’s II former home and workplace at Highland Farm in Doylestown. The goal is to create a multifaceted and dynamic museum experience, with a strong theater education component, that will serve as a place of inspiration for Broadway fans and humanitarians alike, from Hammerstein’s backyard and across the world.

“We are extremely grateful to Senator (Steve) Santarsiero (D-10)and the state for this grant. Preserving Highland Farm, the homestead and creative epicenter where Oscar Hammerstein II wrote the lyrics to some of the world’s most noted and performed songs, is essential for Bucks County, for Pennsylvania and for our country,” said Greg Roth, president of the OHMTEC board of directors.

Speaking on behalf of the board, current Highland Farm owner Christine Cole, and all of the organization’s supporters and advocates, Roth added, “Oscar Hammerstein’s themes of inclusion and acceptance are as relevant today as they were 80 years ago when he penned them.

“The Oscar Hammerstein Museum and Theater Education Center will provide a place for enthusiasts and visitors to be inspired and a place for children from all over the world to have an opportunity to learn about musical theater and pursue their musical theater passions and interests.”

Santarsiero said, “These state funds to help restore and redevelop this iconic property will allow the public to visit the space that inspired some of the most classic American musicals like ‘Oklahoma,’ ‘South Pacific’ and ‘Sound of Music.’”

Oscar and his wife, Dorothy, lived with their family at Highland Farm at 70 East Road in Doylestown, for the last 20 years of his life. This is the place where he forged his legendary partnership with Richard Rodgers and that inspired many of their greatest musical works, including “The Sound of Music,” “Carousel,” “The King and I,” “Showboat,” “Oklahoma!” and “South Pacific.”

It is also the place where Hammerstein mentored a young Stephen Sondheim, and where he contributed to society by increasing awareness of social issues and the need for tolerance of diversity.

The Oscar Hammerstein Museum and Theatre Education Center has been raising funds to support the nonprofit’s ongoing vision to secure the property and realize the dream of a museum and theater education center on the site.

Fundraising success will allow the nonprofit to secure, renovate, and preserve Highland Farm and convert the home and barn into a Museum and Theatre Education Center. The initial fundraising target, which will secure the property and ensure its preservation into the future, has been set at $2 million.

As part of current fundraising efforts, members of the Executive Board are offering a 100% match for all gifts through Dec. 31.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides unique opportunities to maximize the benefits of charitable giving this year. Donors are advised to consult with their financial professionals to determine how the CARES Act may apply to them.

Donations of any amount are welcome and can be made by check, credit card or appreciated securities. Special naming opportunities are also available. Contact Christine Junker, treasurer, for details at To contribute to the effort to #SaveOscarsHome, visit

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